We live in an age where a select number of content publishers can potentially influence the buying decisions of a large amount of people and a single company like Google can shake entire economies when it’s algorithm is updated and for those trying to break through and become more successful online are struggling due to the influence of existing influential individuals and customers. The truth is that whatever the outlook for you or your business, nothing is out of reach.
There are a lot of people that I have spoken to that both set-up a blog and attempt to earn a living online or start up a business and use the internet to try and get more visibility.
The biggest problem that people seem to have is not setting up a website or creating content, but really making an impact in their market. It seems for some, influence is out of reach but today I’m here to tell you, that however difficult this may seem, it can be done.
Today I’m going to share a number of tactics with you that will help you become more influential and make a bigger impact online.
# 1. Build and maintain relationships with industry influencers
It’s surprising how many people don’t know who the influencers in their industry or niche are. If you spend a lot of time reading industry blogs then chances are you’ll know who these influencers are and once you know it’s time to put together a list.
When you’re just starting out, building relationships with influencers will give you a big head start. This is because you may have a small or even virtually none existent audience, but the influencers in your industry already have an established audience that you can potentially tap into by building relationships with them.
Now, I’m not saying go out, build a relationship with someone then drop them once you’ve gained an established audience. That’s not the way this works.
The key is to maintain the relationship and this is done by:
- continuously helping each other,
- sharing each other’s content,
- writing for each other,
- linking out to each other in posts
- and generally helping each other.
Here’s an example – when I first started my blog in December it wasn’t long before I started doing industry round-ups involving the latest from the world of blogging, marketing,
He later mentioned one of my posts in his round-up and I shared that with my followers. To this day, we have shared a lot of each other’s content, mentioned each other in a lot of different posts and helped each other wherever we can.
This is the kind of relationship that will have a big impact on what you do and it boils down to this – Karma, help people out and you’ll be helped out – it’s givers gain, exactly how business networking works offline.
# 2. Guest post on popular industry blogs
A lot of people guest post to get a back link to their site, and while links are the currency of the web and will make a difference to your rankings in Google – the best reason to guest post is to get yourself known within your industry, to get visibility and to get traffic.
When you start to get published on popular industry blogs, things will change – when my first post on ProBlogger.net was published, things changed. Instead of going out and pitching I was being asked to guest post on industry blogs. That’s not to say stop pitching to write for other industry blogs, but it sure does wonders for your visibility.
The next time I pitched someone for a guest post it meant I had a really great sample to show them of what I could do and ultimately managed to get much more opportunities after this.
Don’t just think about contributing once either, carry on contributing – there will be people that might not have seen the first article you published on an industry blog, but they may see the next one so there is still opportunity to garner more visibility.
# 3. Interview industry influencers
One of the best things I ever did for my blog was to set up a group interview that involved a large number of industry influencers. This is the same one that Anita Campbell took part in recently and you can see how well this went here.
If you ask someone to take part in an interview, there is a high likelihood that if you ask them to help you promote it that they will.
Why are people so likely to help?
Whenever anyone is mentioned on a blog in a positive light, it’s an endorsement and by sharing that with your followers you will increase your own perceived authority – that’s whether it’s a round-up or just a straight forward blog post. When it’s a group interview with a number of other big names that you can see will get a lot of traction then it’s extremely compelling.
The other great thing is that interviews are a great resource and they are very shareable and linkable content which ties in very well with #5.
# 4. Offer yourself up for an interview
On the flip side, offering yourself up for an interview will have the same effect as your interview had on those that took part. If you have an opinion or a unique perspective then chances are there will be people that will be open to interviewing you.
The effect that this will have on your audience and level of influence has the potential to far outweigh that of writing a guest post on a popular industry blog because it shows to your audience that people genuinely value what you have to say.
# 5. Deliver quality content
This is nothing new and it’s the foundation for a solid content marketing campaign. I was originally planning to title this section “create great content”, but it just made me think of silly Matt Cutts memes. In any case you need to deliver quality content because if you don’t, your audience won’t stick around for long and people will start to lose faith in what you have to say.
If you make claims, back them up and add as much value as you can to make sure that your audience keep coming back for more.
If you’re new to blogging or creating content then I suggest you check out Niall Devitt’s Ultimate Guide to Blogging For Business – it’s one of the most comprehensive and easily digestible guides that I’ve found so far.
Your online influence is difficult to gauge, although there are tools like Klout and Kred that make it a lot easier to tell just how much of an impact you have across your social media profiles – there are also other engagement metrics you can look at such as blog comments and social shares.
Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day and you can’t expect to immediately become an influencer in your industry overnight, but it can be done if you put time and effort in. Whatever you blog about or whatever your business is, whether you’re a heating engineer or you just blog about golf or another hobby – you can become an influencer.
Nothing is outside of your reach.
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